NCAA volleyball: UNLV, NIU get big victories; Arkansas, ND, UNC win

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NCAA men's women's volleyball 2/19/2021-Gaby Harper-Miami volleyball
Miami's Gaby Harper attacks against Western Michigan/Miami photo

UNLV swept at Colorado State, NIU beat Ball State, Arkansas won at LSU, Notre Dame and North Carolina won their first spring matches, and the UCLA men turned the table on USC on Thursday in college volleyball.

And the weather and COVID continue to upset the schedules.

The recaps follow, but first a look at the NCAA Division I women’s schedule for Friday.

Minnesota at Nebraska highlights the Big Ten schedule that also shows Northwestern at Purdue, Rutgers at Iowa, Maryland at Michigan, Ohio State at Illinois, and Indiana at Penn State.

There are three Pac-12 matches on tap, Washington at Colorado, UCLA at Arizona State, and Oregon State at Arizona. Washington State‘s matches at Stanford scheduled for Friday and Sunday “have been canceled due to a combination of injuries and COVID-19-related issues within the Cardinal program,” Stanford said in a news release, “resulting in less than the minimum number of required student-athletes being available for competition.” The Oregon-at-Utah matches were canceled earlier in the week.

In the SEC, Arkansas is back at LSU, and Georgia is at Missouri. Florida’s matches at Missisippi State were postponed because of “positive COVID-19 tests and contract tracing within the Florida program.”

The two American Athletic Conference matches Friday have South Florida at East Carolina and UCF at Temple, because Tulane at Houston was pushed back to Saturday-Sunday because of weather.

The Atlantic 10 slate includes Dayton at VCU, while in the Big East Creighton and Marquette go at it again.

The MAC has a full schedule, and the Patriot League gets under way with Army West Point at Colgate. Navy was to play at American, but those matches have been postponed.

On the men’s NCAA Division I-II side, there are two MIVA matches when Quincy plays at McKendree and Purdue Fort Wayne is at Lewis. In the EIVA, NJIT is at Charleston and Saint Francis goes to George Mason.

The Concordia-at-Pepperdine MPSF match was postponed.

The Conference Carolinas has four matches with Lees-McRae at Emmanuel, Barton at North Greenville, Mount Olive at Belmont Abbey, and King at Erskine.

Want to watch a match? We’ve got the links in the VolleyballMag.com TV & Streaming Listings.

SEC — Arkansas (11-4) won 16-25, 25-23, 25-20, 25-20 at LSU (3-8) behind 12 kills each by Taylor Head and Jillian Gillen and 10 by Maggie Cartwright. Head had an assist, two aces, 14 digs, and a block. Gillen had three assists, an ace, and 12 digs, and Cartwright had an ace, six digs, and eight blocks. Ellease Crumpton had two kills and seven blocks as the Razorbacks won their fifth in a row. Gracie Ryan had four kills in five errorless attempts, 39 assists, an ace, six digs, and a block.

Hannah Brister led LSU with 13 kills as she hit .385. She had six digs. Taylor Bannister had 12 kills, an assist, six digs, and a block. Paige Flickinger had 11 kills, an assist, an ace, eight digs, and two blocks. Karli Rose had three kills, 43 assists, an ace, seven digs, and two blocks.

ACCNotre Dame and North Carolina opened their respective spring seasons with victories. Notre Dame (7-6) beat visiting Valparaiso (3-5) of the Missouri Valley Conference in a five-set battle of nearby Indiana schools. Caroline Meuth had 17 kills as the Irish played their first match of the spring. She added an assist, 14 digs, and four blocks. Charley Niego had 16 kills, an assist, two aces, 21 digs, and two blocks. Aubrey Hamilton had 13 kills, seven digs, and a block. Hannah Thompson had 10 kills and four blocks. Zoe Nunez had two kills, 57 assists, two aces, 18 digs, and two blocks. Jaclyn Buhlman had 17 kills for Valpo to go with an assist, three digs, and a block. Jillie Grant had 15 kills and 19 digs. Victoria Buhlman had four kills, 50 assists, and 19 digs … 

North Carolina (7-2) swept visiting App State (1-15) of the Sun Belt. Austin Parker led with nine kills and hit .471 to go with an assist, a block, and two digs. Skyy Howard had eight kills with no errors in 13 attacks and she had six blocks.

MID-AMERICAN — Northern Illinois (3-6) knocked off Ball State (5-4), sweeping the Cardinals on their home court. It was the only one of the five MAC matches Thursday that didn’t go four. Kaitlyn Bell led NIU with 16 kills as she hit .536 after having one error in 28 attacks. She also had five blocks and a dig. Katie Jablonski had eight kills and 11 digs. Four Ball State players had six kills each, including Marie Plitt, who had no errors in 12 swings, three digs, and two blocks, one solo … 

Bowling Green kept winning and improved to 9-0 as the Falcons beat visiting Ohio (4-3) in four. It’s the program’s best start since going 12-0 in 2011. Jacqueline Askin led with 21 kills, a block, and a dig. Katelyn Meyer and Petra Indrova had 16 kills each. Meyer had three blocks, and Indrova an ace, 12 digs, and three blocks, one solo. Julia Walz had 38 digs, three assists and four aces. Taylor Haberland had three aces. Lauren Park had 14 kills, three blocks, and seven digs for Ohio, and Maggie Nedoma had 13 kills and three blocks. Sam Steele had 27 digs and three assists … 

Akron (3-6) beat visiting Eastern Michigan (2-4) in four behind 18 kills by Alexis Adleta, who had four blocks and 16 digs. Shelby Fulmer, who had three blocks and 10 digs, and Jen Durra had 10 kills each. All three had an ace apiece. Taylor Sharrits had 34 digs, an ace, and four assists. Franki Strefling had 18 kills for EMU and an ace, two blocks, and nine digs. Bella Hommes had 32 digs and an ace … 

Miami (4-3) beat visiting Western Michigan (6-3) in four as Sarah Wojick and Gaby Harper had 10 kills each and Avarie Powell and Allyson Severance had eight each. Rachel Bontrager led WMU with 16 kills, while Janell Williams and Andelyn Simkins had 10 each. Simkins had two assist, two aces, two blocks, and 14 digs … 

And Central Michigan (4-5) won in four at Buffalo (0-9) as Savannah Thompson led with 16 kills, an assist, three aces, nine digs, and two blocks, one solo. Lisbeth Rosario-Martinez had 12 kills, hit .588, and had an assist, two blocks, and a dig. Milla Malik led Buffalo with 18 kills while hitting .432 and she had two assists, an ace, and nine digs. Emma Gielas had 14 kills and five blocks.

MOUNTAIN WEST — UNLV not only improved to 3-0, but the Rebels won in Fort Collins for only the second time ever with a 32-30, 25-17, 25-20 sweep of Colorado State (3-2). UNLV hit .362. Shelby Capllonch led with 11 kills and hit .375 and she had two blocks and 12 digs. Mariena Hayden had 10 kills, hit .308, and had an assist, four aces, a block, and 10 digs. Alison French had nine kills with one error in 18 attacks. Breana Runnels had 11 kills, an ace, and four digs for Colorado State, which had beaten UNLV eight times in a row … 

Fresno State (2-1) swept visiting San Jose State (1-4) behind nine kills each by Desiree Sukhov, Amaria Kelley, and Savannah Smith. Haylee Nelson had 11 kils for SJSU.

AROUND THE NATION — In the only West Coast match Thursday, Portland (2-6) beat visiting San Francisco (4-3) as Jayde Harris had 14 kills, two aces, a block, and seven digs. Mia Wesley had 12 kills, two blocks, and nine digs, and Neveah Bray had 10 kills, an ace, two blocks, and a dig. Liz Reich had nine kills and Claire Forrest had eight kills, an assist, a dig, and five blocks, one solo. Carey Williams had 28 digs, eight assists, and three aces.

San Francisco’s Valeria Alegrais Cambindo had 17 kills and six digs. McKenna Marshall and Greta Corti had 15 kills each, and Orsula Staka had nine kills, hitting .389, and five solo blocks. Anna Dalla Vecchia had 22 digs and seven assists …

The lone American Athletic match saw UCF (7-0, 1-0) open its AAC season with a sweep at Temple (5-2, 1-2) despite hitting .174. McKenna Melville led with 15 kills, an assist, a block and 13 digs. Kathryn Wesolich had six kills in nine errorless attacks and eight blocks. Gem Grimshaw had 18 kills for Temple and added an assist, two aces, a block, and 11 digs. Falanika Danielson had 27 digs, five assists, and an ace …  

High Point (4-0) hit .342 and swept its Big South match at UNC Asheville (0-4) as Annie Sullivan had 13 kills, Gabrielle Idlebird 11 with no errors in 18 attacks, and Kaley Rammelsberg had 10 kills with one error in 15 swings. Madison Smith had eight kills with one error in 16 attacks. UNC Asheville’s Peyton McClinton had 10 kills … 

Also in the Big South, USC Upstate beat visiting Garder-Webb in four, leaving both teams 1-4. Nikki Deslate led a balanced USC Upstate attack with 10 kills as she hit .444. Kylee Garrison had 17 kills, seven aces, a block, and 12 digs for G-W … 

Houston Baptist (2-5) won its Southland Conference opener at Nicholls State (0-5, 0-4) as Reagan Leinen led with 15 kills in the five-set victory. She hit .333 and had two blocks and a dig. Mikayla Vivens had 11 kills, an assist, two blocks, and 17 digs, and Kaley Feris had 24 digs and two assists. Yani Johnson led Nicholls State with 13 kills and hit .579 to go with a block and two digs …

MEN — When they played at UCLA last Saturday, USC came away with a four-set win. Thursday, UCLA (3-2) won the MPSF match over USC (1-1) 25-23, 25-20, 27-29, 25-21. Cole Ketrzynski led UCLA with 18 kills and added three aces, two blocks, and five digs. Austin Matautia had 12 kills, an assist, two aces, a block, and eight digs. Ethan Champlin added 11 kills, hit .318, and had five digs and three blocks, one solo. Billy Fauntleroy led USC with 14 kills, six digs, and four blocks, one solo …

Pepperdine (3-2) won 25-23, 25-20, 27-29, 25-21 in its MPSF match at Stanford, which was playing the first match of its last season since the school is dropping the sport. Spencer Wickens led the Waves with 10 kills while hitting .318 and he had three blocks and six digs. Austin Wilmot had nine kills, hit .500, and had an ace, a dig, and eight blocks. Pepperdine hit .324, while Stanford hit .098. Luke Turner had 13 kills and hit .308 for the Cardinal and he added five assists, two blocks, and four digs. Will Rottman had 10 kills, two aces, two blocks, and four digs. Setter Nathan Lietzke had three kills in as many attempts, 29 assists, two blocks, and four digs … 

Also in the MPSF, BYU (4-1) beat visiting Grand Canyon (1-2) 26-24, 23-25, 25-18, 25-20 as the Cougars hit .344. Gabi Garcia Fernandez led with 15 kills, he hit .387, and had two ace, a block, and five digs. Davide Gardini had 14 kills, hit .320, and had three assists, an ace, four blocks, and five digs. GCU’s Hugo Fischer had 18 kills, hitting .364, and had an assist, an ace, four digs, and four blocks, one solo. Camden Gianni had 16 kills, an assist, an ace, a block and three digs … 

In the MIVA, McKendree (6-0, 5-0) beat visiting Quincy (3-5, 0-5) in four as Lucas Galifos and Ethan Carroll had 13 kills each and Zach Schnittker had 10. Galifos hit .647 and had four blocks, one solo. Quincy’s Michael Ladner had 17 kills and hit .306.

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